Jaden Smith and New Balance are launching a new colorway of their vegan sneaker collaboration: Vision Racer. The duo teamed up with Foot Locker’s incubation hub, Greenhouse, to design the pink kicks, dubbed the Pink New Balance x Jaden Vision Racer with Greenhouse.
The pink colorway—out May 14—is the collection’s eighth iteration. Similar to previous Vision Racer designs, the shoes feature animal-free and recycled materials. According to New Balance, the launch of the Vision Racer collection helped “speed up the brand’s timeline to leverage more sustainable and vegan-friendly materials.”
In 2020, the company launched the “Surplus” Vision Racer. The kicks are made entirely with surplus textiles and synthetic leather, meaning no two pairs are exactly the same.
The shoes incorporate excess factory materials and waste fabric uppers, and each panel may feature a different color. Although each shoe is unique, every pair features partially recycled insoles made with castor bean oil and recycled foam and rubber. The midsole is made of reground EVA foam and has the same distinctive profile as previous iterations of the Vision Racer shoes.
Jaden Smith x New Balance
New Balance and Smith first launched their collaboration, the NB for Jaden Smith Vision Racer, in July 2019. The initial collection also prioritized sustainable construction and used vegan leather and partially recycled polyester for the stylish uppers.
At first, Vision Racers were exclusively available in Wavy Baby Blue. But New Balance added a Wavy White colorway in August of last year. Originally slated for release on August 28, New Balance pushed the launch of the second design back to the 31st. This was to encourage young voter registration and highlight its importance.
The brand confirmed in a statement: “This is a time for action. With that in mind, we’re holding off on dropping Jaden Smith’s new Vision Racer until Monday, August 31, and encouraging everyone to put their energy into voter registration.”
It continued: “Take the time to register yourself, a friend, or relative today. When everyone participates equally, justice will follow.”
Merging New Balance Design With Jaden Smith’s Aesthetic
According to New Balance, the NB for Jaden Smith Vision Racer “merges classic New Balance design with Jaden’s unique, bold, fashion-forward aesthetic for a new silhouette that pushes the boundaries for sustainably-led footwear.”
It features a distinctive, clunky profile and sole. The Vision Racer also features design elements from Smith’s favorite New Balance shoes: the X-Racer and classic 1700.
“Shared values of transforming the status quo; staying true to oneself; giving back to community; and, respecting heritage while co-authoring a distinct future, are the foundation of the relationship between New Balance and Jaden Smith,” Chris Davis, New Balance Chief Marketing Officer and Senior Vice President of Merchandising said in a statement.
The New Balance collaboration is not Smith’s first venture into the apparel industry. He also co-founded the MSFTSrep along with his sister, Willow, along with Moises Arias and his brother, Mateo. The brand showcased its Fall 2021 menswear collection at Pitti Uomo, a prolific Florence-based trade fair (which is currently digital due to the pandemic, but due to return in June) for men’s fashion.